Value over volume: Italian M&A and PE activity in 2020

07 January 2021

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Mergermarket and Unquote are pleased to present Value over volume: Italian M&A and PE activity in 2020, published in association with Gatti Pavesi Bianchi Ludovici. This report provides invaluable insights into M&A and private equity (PE) activity in Italy across 2020, focusing on the impacts of Covid-19 on dealmaking in the region.         


Highlights from the report include:

  • M&A activity dominated by deals at the top end of the marketItalian M&A value witnessed a YoY rise across Q1-Q3 2020, even as volume dropped, with 318 deals worth €29.1bn representing a 32% fall by volume, but a 11% increase by value. The rise in deal value is largely due to an increase in higher value deals. There were seven €1bn+ deals announced in the first nine months of the year, including the largest deal of the year so far: The €7.7bn acquisition of Fibercop by a consortium led by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Telecom Italia in the TMT space.
  • PE value shoots up, while volume falls. Following much the same pattern as M&A activity as a whole, PE deal activity was also dominated by large deals. 88 PE deals were struck between Q1-Q3 – a 25% drop by volume – while value rose by 141% to €15.6bn compared to the same period last year. This is higher than 2019’s overall PE value which reached €11.8bn.
  • The consumer sector looks set to return to the fore as better management of the pandemic sparks anticipation of a rebound. The outlook for 2021 is far more promising than it was six months ago with dealmaking activity in Q3 allowing for cautious optimism, particularly for the consumer sector. Between April and October, Mergermarket published 243 ‘companies for sale’ stories in Italy, with the consumer sector accounting for 87 of these. The next most popular sectors were TMT and industrials and chemicals, accounting for 36 stories each.